Date: November 1, 2014
Renai and Eremi talk about recent events and make plans to possibly visit Kadomai.
"Lost Sand: Pages of the Past"
Village Center Area, Sunagakure, Land of Wind
The very center hub of Sunagakure, the Village Center is a bustling area. Crowds gather in huge groups, all across the very wide square. It is completely protected by the large buildings surrounding it on all sides, and the four desert winds do not seem to intrude into this area.
People can be found doing all manner of things, from hocking wares, to trading for certain fabrics and materials, selling their products, or any other activity from sleeping quietly, to getting into explosive arguments with people. Fights are not unknown here, so there is regularily guards overseeing the circle. The entire circle itself is built to face the largest structure in all of Sunagakure. It is a massive domed building, easily 5 stories high, that seems to be constructed out of seamless and flawless sand. No stones, no mud, just pure sand, caked hard and formed into a building. This is the Kazekage Administration Dome, the head of bureaucracy for the mighty city of Sunagakure.
There are entrances in all directions into the square, except the south, which is where the Administration dome is located. People are always flowing into the circle from all directions, and leaving as well. Even during the night, it is a sure bet that a large crowd will be in the circle, talking about all manner of subjects.
South - (S) [Sentou Valley]
Enter Dome - (ED) [Kazekage Administration Dome]
West - (W) [Nishikaze Street]
North - (N) [Kitakaze Street]
East - (E) [Toufuu Street]
The light and heat of the day slowly faded away as time ticked by. The shifting of the seasons taking away from the normal long and hot days of summer. Something Eremi was relieved of during his temporary stay in Suna. The man was currently waiting at the gates of the village, leaning against one of the pillars. Renai had left some time ago, wanting to head back to the previous 'dig site' they had located with the information the girl had been given. Seeing no reason to follow along as no danger would be present, Eremi remained behind, but with the hours passing by he was starting to grow worried and anxious. It would only be a few more moments before he went out to look for the girl himself. Hoping she would be alright were he to find her.
Renai had put her hood and cloak back on despite the stinging sunburns to protect herself. She should have left it on while she was working, but the physical activity and the sun just made everything so hot. She'll really regret it when the sun goes down entirely. Perhaps she can find something to treat her skin in the markets.. Surely, these people would know the best thing to do.
She approaches the gates and is stopped. The guard peers at the hooded girl suspiciously, eyeing the shovel she's carrying on her shoulder. Renai blinks and then emits a soft, "Oh!" Pushing her hood back, she grins at him widely, letting the tool down to dig its tip into the sand. "Sorry. It's only me."
After a moment of checking, they permit her inside with warnings of 'Watch where you swing that thing!' and the like. She's smiling slightly when she approaches Eremi, "There you are. I thought you might get antsy and come out anyways. Digging into that hole took a lot longer than I had expected. How's your day been?" Her nose and cheeks are flushed red from the effects of the sun, making her look a bit.. cute, maybe? She really isn't sure how bad it looks.
Waiting in the sun and the heat didn't bother Eremi. Perhaps because of his already darkened, sun kissed skin from the time he spent out in Suna during his last visit or always traveling about, but lately he doesn't even think about covering up. If his constant training growing up wasn't enough to make his skin hard as leather, the sun would sure get it there.
When he notices the guards react and a hooded figure approach, Eremi pushed off his resting spot and approached the girl, meeting her half way. "I knew you'd be ok." Grinning at the girl. "It's been rather lackluster. What about yours? You find anything of importance?"
Renai reaches into her shirt to retrieve the small hand-written article she had found. She shakes it gently to dislodge the stray bits of sand and then hands the thing over to him. The pages are yellowed, but the writing is legible. There a drawing of a fish tucked away inside. "I don't know if it's important, but I found that. I've only skimmed through it, but it seems to be a daily journal. I have noticed anything unusual yet, but.." She shrugs her shoulders and emits a sigh.
She stops smiling as she remembers the site her, gently wedging the shovel into the ground and wiggling it. "That whole thing seemed odd, don't you think? I would think sand would.. I don't know, erode more than that in fifteen years. Maybe that's somehow significant as well?" She shrugs and watches Eremi, wondering what he makes of it all.
Eremi's eyes would shift away from Renai and drift toward the book she retrieves. "So going back and doing a little digging was worth the effort. That's good." Taking the book, he'd gingerly flip through the pages, scanning over the words until finally coming to a picture of a fish. The drawing he'd stare at for a while before handing the book back to Renai, "I'm not entirely sure what to make out of any of this." Eyes returning to Renai, looking over her features and catching the redness in her face. "Come on." He'd start to walk away, assuming she was following along. "It did seem odd. From what I saw at least. I feel like the building was significant to be buried by other means than nature and marked for a return trip…"
She follows. Renai takes a few quick steps to catch up with his pace and then matches his stride so they more or less stay side by side. "Maybe. It all just makes me ask more questions. I wonder who buried it. The inside looked as though it had been raided recently as well. There was nothing there other than an old dilapidated desk and that journal. I doubt the journal is what was wanted, but if it was.." Her words trail off and she disappears briefly into thought. "You think they just wanted us to do the dirty work?"
Eremi continued walking along the street with a single designation in mind. "Well, you at least have something now. It's not answers, only more questions, but it can lead to your answers. Read through the book, see what you find, if nothing you can show the picture around and see if anyone recognizes it. Perhaps it's an important symbol of some kind." He'd pause for a moment in his speech, "Maybe you belong to some sort of Sand Fish Clan." Chuckling at the thought before shaking his head, "I'm not sure who 'they' are, but, no. 'They' have more than enough people to do the work much faster without getting another party involved."
Renai hmms at the thought of being in a Sand Fish Clan. She can't help but giggle at the imagery. "Maybe. I don't expect to find anyone really, but it would be nice to know who the people were and what they were like." At least one thing is mostly clear to her: if she had a 'people,' a group that can do what she can, they seem to have died out. She had sort of hoped her blood was something new. There would be less to mourn that way.
Her stomach growls and she lifts her head to peer at the vendors longingly. "Where are we going, Eremi?" She continues following him, despite her urges to go back and buy a ton of yummy things. Even if the food is weird, she can always manage to find something delicious.
"Oh? And here I thought you were looking for a big ol' family reunion." Eremi passed each of the vendors as he continued walking before turning down another street, "We're just going somewhere else." Was all the man offered, but it wasn't long before the girl would recognize where they were headed as up ahead was the Sand Storm Bar. A place the man tried to frequent often when time was free. Though as they continued further down the street his path veered from the bar toward the Tsuukai restaurant. "Let's get some shade and some water for you." Exactly what he did as he moved toward a table outside.
She doesn't seem to mind going to the bar. There's really only one semi-nice place to eat in Kirigakure and it's a bar. But she smiles unexpectedly when he turns toward the restaurant instead.
The girl takes off her cloak once they find a place to sit and leans her random shovel up against an empty seal. She is fried. Her hair is dry, all the shine in it having been baked away. Her shoulders, upper arms, and forearms are red with tiny blisters starting to pop up. Luckily the rest of her was covered or she might find all this rather uncomfortable.
When a glass of water is set in front of her, she downs it thirstily, taken by an urge to drink she didn't know she had. Renai blinks at the glass and blushes when she sets it down. "I don't know what I'd do if I /did/ have family here. Probably leave. That would just be too much, I think." Her crispy shoulders lift slightly in a shrug.
Though it was clear the girl was burnt, dealing with the possible dehydration was more important. Burns heal and will give Renai a nice new complexion. "Really? I find that surprising. So, what exactly are you looking for then?" More water would be brought to the table, but Eremi didn't bother touching it. Leaving it for Renai to quench her thirst. Until hearing what the girl actually wanted out of making this trip, there wasn't much else he had to say.
Renai is quiet as she sips at the second glass, just not knowing how to answer. She briefly distracts herself with ordering food and is silent for a few moments more before finally speaking. "Information, for one, that will help me with training. I'd like to know what happened, but I have little faith that there is enough documentation to answer that. If anyone that knew my parents is alive, or even relatives, I would like to know. It's just.." She takes a long sip of the cool liquid, pausing.
"I have to go back, Eremi. Kirigakure is my home. But if the alliance with Sunagakure ever fails and I know I have family here.. How can I do my job loyally with that kind of knowledge?" She looks up to him, her eyes having been focused mostly on the table as she spoke. "Maybe it would be better to know. It's just all too much to think about though." As if to demonstrate the headache the conundrum gives her, she places her hands over her hot forehead and squeezes.
Eremi listened and nodded slowly, "So you're looking for a scroll with sand manipulation techniques or maybe someone that could actually teach you?" The rest of what Renai had to say came as a surprise to him, but considering what he's dealt with up to this point, he should just start expecting the unexpected. "Sure, I can understand that. I left Konoha, but it's still my home. My family isn't even in Konoha, it's in Kadomai and yet I still have a strong connection to both." He was sure what he was saying wasn't exactly helping. He was a fighter, it was all he knew. He wants to help others, but only knows how through protecting…not kind words. "What ever your decision, I'll be here with you as you go through it."
Renai smiles to him when he reassures her that he'll be there. She isn't sure she would have made it this far without him. Whatever debt that's between them, she'd like to think they're more like friends. Almost family. She would probably kill someone if they tried to hurt Eremi after all. She drinks the rest of the water and sets the glass down with a thud and a sigh.
"I think it might be a little risky.." Like coming here wasn't. "But maybe after we get done here, we can go to Kadomai." She screws her face up in thought. "I may need to dye my hair a normal color so I'm not so noticeable. I've only been to Konohagakure once. And that was a very short visit. And if the security in Konohagakure reaches as far as Kadomai.. Well, I'd just rather be safe about it." She grins and reaches up to stretch a strand of green hair out. "Or, maybe if there's time, I'll just let it grow out and chop it down to the natural bits." There's already a bit of a golden blonde color showing at her roots. It isn't enough to show the true color, but she didn't bring anything to keep it touched up. "We should go. I want to see where you grew up."
"I haven't been in Kadomai in a while." Pausing at the thought of going back, Eremi would get lost in his own thoughts for a bit. "Sounds like you've might have put a little thought into this already? Or maybe you're just always ready to dye your hair if the need be…" He smirked, "Anyways, I have no need to go visit Kadomai. Occassionaly I'll skirt the borders of both Kadomai and Konoha, but never enter. I'd like to be them to protect both if possible, but sometimes it's not always easy. I think though, if anything bad happened to Kadomai, I'd blame Konoha. Since they decided to take the village under their protection.
When he mentions her having thought of this a while, Renai grins mischievously. She listens to him though, wanting to know more about her mysterious guardian. As he talks, the food arrives. She digs in a bit tentatively at first. She hasn't eaten much all day and doesn't want to make herself sick from suddenly gorging herself on rice and meat.
"I need to go to Kadomai." She grins to him in between bites with that same mischievousness. "You know almost everything there is to know about me other than some things about my adopted Touketsu family. But all I know about you is.. well, the obvious things.." Like being a missing nin. "And that you have a big heart. Don't deny it." Renai brandishes a chopstick menacingly. "No matter how much you wish to hide yourself behind drink and this whole stoic tough guy act, Eremi, I can tell you're a guy who cares deeply about the things that are important to him." As if to lighten the mood of her words, she points to herself with a chopstick, smiles sweetly and then gives him a knowing wink to play off her bloated ego as a joke. "So we have to go. It's necessary."
Eremi smiled, but glanced away to merely look off in the distance. "Well, if you've already made up your mind, it sounds like that's where we're going next, but just know…Suna is at least allied with Kiri, Konoha on the otherhand, if Meruin were to find out…." Not finishing his sentence as Renai already knew what he was getting at. Turning back to look at the girl, "Well, I won't deny that. Never been easy for me to make friends, so when I finally have one, I don't want to lose them…"
The mention of Meruin sends a chill down her spine. She's been trying very hard to not think about what kind of trouble she'll be in when she gets back. He could very well already have grounds for whipping or even executing her, though she doubts he would go that far. She's valuable to him. Well, her blood is at least. But from what he's said, Renai likes to think that in the end Meruin might be understanding of her impatience and thirst for knowledge, him being an intellectual man himself.
"We'll see. I want to go to see your home, but it might not be the best time. I still think it might be possible though if we're careful." She tips her head side to side in thought, weighing and pondering and she shoves several bites of food into her mouth. At his last statement, Renai smiles to him fondly, keeping her lips closed to keep from giving him an eyeful of what she's chewing.